; Recovery and Resilience
Learning Center
Plans & pricing Sign in
Sign Out
Your Federal Quarterly Tax Payments are due April 15th Get Help Now >>

Recovery and Resilience


  • pg 1
									DISASTER MANAGEMENT                                                                   RECOVERY

This tool will help you to:
Determine which actions will get life and commerce back to normal as soon as possible
Build on the relief activities that were implemented during the pandemic
Improve pre-disaster conditions and build resilience to future risks

Who will implement this tool:
 The mayor
 The municipal leadership team
 Relevant staff from the following municipal sectors
  -  Family Welfare/Food Security
  -  Communication
  -  Health
  -  Education
  -  Agriculture and Natural Resources

In collaboration with the following groups:
 Community-based organizations
 Religious and spiritual support organizations
 Food wholesalers and retail markets
 Humanitarian and development nongovernmental organizations (NGOs)
 National emergency management agencies

A moderate pandemic may impact life and commerce only for the duration of the pandemic
waves and may actually strengthen social networks as people come to each other’s assistance.
A more severe pandemic may have caused many deaths, drastic inflation, unemployment, food
crisis, and a collapse of social networks. Recovery
from a series of severe pandemic waves will require        STEPS TO RECOVERY AND
hard work and persistence on the part of local                   RESILIENCE
                                                     Pandemic recovery programs should:
leaders and community members.
                                                           Reduce fear and re-establish a sense
                                                            of security
After several severe pandemic waves, the tendency          Reassess vulnerability and strengthen
may be to analyze the situation simply in terms of          and sustain relief activities
needs and deficiencies, because both will certainly        Get life and commerce back to normal
be immense. Yet a municipality must rely on an             Improve on pre-disaster living
inventory of remaining assets and capacities if it is       conditions and overall well-being by
to find the power to regenerate itself. Initially,          linking relief activities to longer-term
communities should determine what they can do               work that addresses the underlying
immediately, without external assistance, using all         causes of food shortages and poverty
existing skills, resources, and technical experience.
Some recovery efforts may require more resources than a municipality has available. The team
must then be prepared to communicate the priorities of the municipality to national and regional

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                            1
government, international agencies, and other sources of external support, once assistance
becomes available.

Pandemic recovery efforts occur in stages. They cover the critical middle ground between
disaster response and improving long-term well-being for at-risk populations. These activities
can be undertaken immediately following a pandemic, once health experts have declared that
social distancing is no longer needed. These activities will reduce fear and reestablish a sense
of calm. Examples are reopening schools and businesses and making sure that short-term
income and basic necessities are available. There are other recovery activities that can take
place once a sense of normalcy and security begins to return to the municipality. The goal of
these efforts is to strengthen the resiliency of households and communities so that they are
better able to manage future shocks. These efforts include rebuilding household and community
assets, and restoring local institutions that have been overwhelmed by the pandemic,
particularly health facilities.

Reduce public fear and support the community’s grieving process
The first stage of recovery involves reducing public fear and supporting the grieving process.
The psychological impact of the pandemic on survivors may be huge; psychosocial support will
be extremely important to restore a sense of calm. Concerns that
people have about future outbreaks, about their ability to get life      Psychosocial support is
back to normal, or about other worries must be identified,               the ongoing process of
recognized, and dealt with as soon as possible. Immediately after        meeting emotional,
the pandemic has run its course, the team should begin activities to     social, mental, and
reduce fear and reestablish a sense of security.                         spiritual needs, all of
                                                                         which are considered
                                                                         essential elements of
Gender, age, and previous medical conditions may influence the           meaningful and positive
impact the pandemic has on families and individuals and should be        human development.
taken into account by those providing psychosocial support. Homes        (FHI, 2006)
will likely be the place where most people have suffered. Women—
often the primary caregivers for household illness—may need additional grief and recovery
counseling. Schools will also play an important role in this process by helping children recover
from a very frightening experience and move forward.

With municipal staff from the education and communication sector, and any available resources
or direction from national level government, develop a public education and communications
plan. Television, radio, and newspapers can help the community recover by sharing accurate
information and dispelling rumors. The public should be made aware of normal responses to
fear, uncertainty, survivor guilt, trauma, and disasters.

Organize community meetings to discuss the end of the pandemic and to assure people that life
can get back to normal. To aid in the grieving process, memorials and candle-light vigils can be
held for those that have passed away. During upcoming cultural events and festivals, the dead
can be remembered and celebrated, if this is an acceptable tradition. These outlets and venues
should also be used to provide sources of further information and help. (For more information,
see Tool 13, Fundamentals of Communication during Crises and Emergencies, Tool 14, News

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                        2
Media Communication, and Tool 15, Communications Plan Implementation for a Severe

Reopen public places
Once health experts and national authorities have declared that social distancing and isolation
measures are no longer needed, the team should encourage schools, community centers,
businesses, and markets to reopen—even if they are short-staffed or have limited supplies. This
will help people feel that things are getting back to normal. Depending on the severity of the
disruption in trade, many smaller businesses may not be able to reopen immediately and may
need assistance to recuperate. Options for reviving economic activities and markets are
discussed in the next section.

Reintroduce joy
Bringing joy and laughter back to the community can be an important contributor to coping with
losses and restoring a sense of normalcy. Consider organizing recreational activities, cultural
events, or music festivals in order to bring people together. Give them the opportunity to talk
about their experiences and promote supportive relationships.

Once initial fear is reduced and a sense of security begins to return, the team can concentrate
on municipal programs that will link relief efforts to recovery. Well-planned influenza pandemic
recovery programs address not only the immediate recovery situation but also the underlying
causes of hunger and suffering among affected populations. The goal of these efforts is to
strengthen the resiliency of households and communities so that they are more able to manage
future shocks.

This next stage of recovery involves three steps. (1) First, identify the people in the municipality
that have suffered the most and will have trouble getting back on their feet. Then simultaneously
(2) make sure that short-term income and basic necessities are available for these people, and
(3) link short-term relief efforts to longer-term strategies for building resources and skills that will
reduce the impact of future disasters. Depending on how severely the pandemic affected the
municipality, recovery operations may continue for up to two years.

The first step in designing recovery programs is to identify those who have been most affected
by the pandemic and those that will have the most trouble getting back on their feet. Target
immediate assistance to these groups. If the team used Tool 10, Identification of People Most at
Risk of Food Insecurity before the pandemic arrived, update that information now with a follow-
up assessment to help determine who has suffered most, and who has been more resilient to
the pandemic’s impact. If the team was not able to undertake this assessment before the
pandemic, now is the time to gather that information.

Determine the coping strategies that people have used in response to the pandemic.
Coping strategies refer to the ways that individuals, households, and communities combine their
skills, knowledge, and resources to respond to a shock or disaster. These strategies can be
positive or negative and investigating both types is important to understanding whether a
situation is worsening, remaining the same, or improving. Awareness of coping strategies can
help the team identify which households are in most need of recovery assistance, and it can
increase understanding of how those who have managed fairly well through the pandemic have
been able to do so. This last important point is often overlooked. By understanding successful

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                            3
coping strategies that have helped people survive, leaders are able to share this information
with others that have not fared so well, helping them to be better prepared for future disasters.
(For more information, see Tool 10, Identification of People Most at Risk of Food Insecurity.)
The chart below gives examples of coping strategies that people might use in response to a
severe influenza pandemic

                       Positive                                            Negative
Planting a small garden with short-cycle crops      Migrating away from home to distance themselves
during the first week of the pandemic, which        from an infected area, thereby losing jobs or
provides vegetables for the household during the    leaving farms or businesses unattended. In urban
peak of the wave.                                   areas where influenza rates are likely to be the
                                                    highest due to large populations, there could be
Organizing exchanges among neighbors to             high rates of urban-rural migration as families
increase the variety of foods the household eats.   migrate to live with rural relatives to escape the
Gathering and preserving fruit found on common      pandemic, thus exposing rural areas to the
municipal property.                                 disease.

                                                    Reducing the quantity and quality of food
                                                    consumed because food has not been available in
                                                    the municipality or because it has been

Make sure short-term income and basic necessities are available
The next recovery step will be to help the groups of people that have been most affected to
obtain short-term income and basic items such as water, food, shelter, medicines, and clothing.
In addition to the information gathered in the assessments, encourage the community to
participate in identifying people that should receive assistance. This establishes an open and
participatory process.

Carefully consider what the municipality can do with its own resources and capacities to help
those in need in the short term. Some of these recovery activities will be maintained for a short
time (6 months or less), such as the response efforts used during the pandemic, and outlined in
Tool 12, Distribution of Emergency Food during an Influenza Pandemic. Additional activities for
consideration are listed below. The specific mix of activities should be tailored to the local
context and based on the full participation of the municipality.

   Set up supplemental feeding centers (community kitchens, soup kitchens) for at-risk
    populations such as the elderly and children.
   Provide vouchers, stamps, or other alternative currency that can be used to purchase food
    in local markets. This will also help to stimulate local business.
   Continue to encourage home gardens as a means of improving diet diversity and to provide
    immediate access to low-cost foods. Supply seeds and technical assistance, if possible.
   Provide health, hygiene, and nutrition education.
   Organize food security recovery programs like food- or cash-for-work. This will free up
    money for food purchases. See Handout 1 for food-for-work/cash-for work considerations.
   Provide cash-for-training (i.e. people learn vocational and other life skills to enhance food
    and livelihood security).

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                              4
Link short-term relief efforts to longer-term strategies for building resources and skills
that will reduce the impact of future disasters
While some of the municipal staff works to identify and assist those that have suffered the most
from the impact of the pandemic, other municipal staff—with community input—should identify
what can be done with local resources and manpower to get life and commerce back to normal.
An overarching objective will be to improve on pre-disaster living conditions and overall well-
being. The municipal leadership team will want to link relief activities to longer-term work that
addresses the underlying causes of food shortages and poverty. All activities should focus on
strengthening the resiliency of households and communities so that they are more able to
manage future shocks.

To enhance the speed and appropriateness of recovery activities, make full use of the assets
and capacities that already exist in the community. By building on the abilities of local
households, the capacities of local associations, the strength of social networks, and the
supportive functions of local institutions, the municipality can secure and restore income-
generating opportunities and access to services that will ultimately build stronger, more
sustainable communities. These communities will then be less vulnerable to future shocks,
particularly those such as a pandemic that impact global market supplies.

A key objective of these efforts will be to revive economic activities and markets. Following a
severe pandemic, trade can be reestablished through the rehabilitation of small and medium
businesses. Due to expected high mortality rates, skills and business training, as well as other
services that support the development of small businesses, will be critically needed. Vocational
training programs can also serve to address the impact that mortality rates may have on staffing

With the help of the community, brainstorm a list of all recovery options that might be relevant
and effective in the municipality. The list of sample activities below offers some initial ideas.
Some activities, such as reestablishing market linkages, may require external assistance.
Separate the list into two groups: recovery options that can be done with local resources and
manpower, and recovery options that require external assistance. This will help to identify what
can be done right now, as well as help to prepare leaders to communicate the municipality’s
priorities to sources of external support, should assistance become available.

Sample Recovery Activities
 Strengthen or reestablish local markets and supply chains
 Support efforts to reinstate or strengthen cross-border markets and food supply chains
 Strengthen or reestablish transport of goods, medicines, and services
 Offer skills training for immediate (self) employment; match job seekers to employment
 Facilitate small loans for business activities in all sectors
 Provide business training for new businesses
 Support the formation of cooperatives
 Facilitate start-up grants for vulnerable groups who face difficulties greater than the loss of
  productive assets (e.g., women who lost their husbands or main income earner)
 Provide access to alternative opportunities for earning income
 Provide education and support for mothers, families, and communities on child health and
  hygiene, as well as feeding and care practices for infants and young children with influenza
 Strengthen health service delivery systems; ensure equitable access to vaccines and other

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                         5
   Revitalize small-scale agriculture and animal husbandry
   Introduce vocational training and improved agricultural technologies, including low-labor
    input technologies
   Strengthen natural resource management (e.g., reforestation, water harvesting)
   Strengthen agricultural extension services
   Advocate for national government solutions that help poor people manage risks
   Support citizen awareness campaigns and communication and media efforts

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                     6
                                                                                   Handout 1

              Considerations for Conditional Transfer Activities
                      (Food-for-Work/Cash for Work)
Conditional transfer activities generate income for those who are able and willing to work.
The regional or national government may be able to provide more information on how these
programs have been used in the country before.

Two of the most common types of conditional transfer programs are cash-for-work and food-for-
work. Employment in public or community works programs provides income-earning
opportunities and, at the same time, improves the living environment for pandemic-affected
communities through building, rehabilitating, and maintaining needed community infrastructure.
Both types of community works programs have the following benefits:
 Food-for-work/cash-for-work can help people retake control of their lives. They provide
   immediate work opportunities as well as a basis for longer-term employment by helping
   people learn new skills.
 The cash or food transfers help buffer food shortages that have resulted from market
   collapse, transportation problems, and reduced employment due to layoffs and illness.

Important factors to consider if the municipal leadership team decides to include food-for-work
or cash-for-work as part of an influenza pandemic recovery program:
 Workers must be healthy enough to perform the activities.
 Transport costs to and from the work site must be provided.
 Communities should participate in the decisionmaking process and view the activity as
    something that creates a valuable community asset, such as tree planting on common

Although cash-for-work and food-for-work can be successful short-term measures, they do bring
with them the inherent risk of creating dependency. In a post-influenza pandemic situation,
recovery efforts should shift out of temporary transfer programs (food-for-work and cash-for-
work) as quickly as possible and into activities designed to rebuild the economy and sustainable

Cash-for-work and food-for-work are compared and contrasted in the table on the following

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                       7
Table 1: Considerations for Food-for-Work and Cash-for-Work Programs

                   Food-for-Work                                             Cash-for-Work
Immediately following a pandemic, markets are             In many cases, food is not the most appropriate
likely to be shut down. Because households will           resource for recovery efforts. Cash-for-work is
have limited access to markets, food prices will          designed to increase purchasing power and build
increase, thus reducing food availability for most        local capacity by enhancing skill sets.
households. Food-for-work can help municipalities
meet food needs until the market stabilizes.

                    Considerations                                            Considerations
In a post-influenza pandemic situation, the               The items people need to purchase must be
  nutritional value of the food provided is critical as    available in the markets and priced competitively.
  many workers will be recovering from illness.           Cash-for-work programs are quicker to launch,
Ration size and nutrient content must exceed the           easier to manage, and less expensive than cash-
  human energy expenditure requirements of the             for food programs.
  work activity pursued.                                  Cash-for-work has lower logistical costs than food-
The food given out (food basket) should include            for-work (which has high transport costs and can
  traditional or popular foods if possible. (Take into     easily disrupt the food market where it exists).
  consideration local food culture.)                      Cash-for-work can inject cash into the community,
The self-targeting feature of food-for-work allows         which can start a chain reaction and help many
  the most needy to contribute their labor to obtain       other sectors of the market as well. In particular,
  food while helping to develop or maintain the            the purchasing power of the community will be
  community's infrastructure.                              increased. The use of local resources can provide
Food transfers are less susceptible to security            an added bonus if the resources come from the
  problems for recipients than cash transfers;             target locality (e.g., producing bricks locally rather
  however, food is more susceptible to staff theft         than bringing them from the capital or from
  than cash.                                               abroad).
Food-for-work may be a better choice than cash-           The amount of the cash transfer should be
  for-work in communities where there is the risk of       equivalent to or just below the local minimum
  cash being spent on nonfood/nonessential items.          wage.
Obtaining enough food to give people may be               Cash-for-work must be monitored so that it does
  difficult.                                               not lead to labor shortages for local enterprises.
Storage facilities must be available.                     Self-targeting of the most needy may not be as
Staff with the capacity to manage food stocks must         effective as with food-for-work, due to the
  be available.                                            desirability of cash.
                                                          Security and diversion risks for cash may be
                                                           greater than food transfer risks.

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                                    8
   AED. 2008. Food, nutrition and livelihood preparedness for a pandemic influenza disaster:
    guidance for low-income countries. AED/IFRC Working Group 1.
   Amarantunga, C., and T.L. O’Sullivan. 2006. In the path of disasters: Psychosocial issues
    for preparedness, response, and recovery. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine. Women’s
    Health Research Unit. Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa.
   FHI. 2009. Definition of psychosocial support in OVC support tool kit. Web site for
    International HIV/AIDS Alliance.
   IFRC (International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies). 2004. World
    disaster report: Focus on community resilience. Geneva: IFRC.
   ILO. 2005. Rapid income recovery programme (RIRP) (for Sri Lanka Tsunami). Draft.
   Maunder, R., J. Hunter, L. Vincent, et al. 2003. The immediate psychological and
    occupational impact of the 2003 SARS outbreak in a teaching hospital. Canadian Medical
    Association Journal 168 (10).
   McKnight, John L.and John P. Kretzmann. 1990. Program on Community Development.
    Mapping Community Capacity. Institute for Policy Research. Northwestern University.
   The Sphere Project. 2000. Humanitarian Charter and minimum standards in disaster
   Ursano, R., A. Norwood, and C. Fullerton, Eds. 2004. Bioterrorism: Psychological and public
    health interventions.

Prepared for AI.COMM by Tango International                                                   9

To top